Operation Motorsport, a non-profit organization that provides recovery, retraining and rehabilitation opportunities to injured service members and disabled veterans through motorsports, is partnering with Sebring International Raceway to provide opportunities to U.S. Army Warrant Officer 3 DeWayne Crawford and retired U.S. Marine Corp Staff Sgt. Jonathon Reid during the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring presented by Advance Auto Parts.
As part of their responsibilities during the famed race, Crawford, 43, and Reid, 29, are working with the Sebring marketing and hospitality staff to serve corporate guests. As part of its mission, Operation Motorsport introduces meaningful positions for injured and disabled active service members and veterans inside motorsports to help them recuperate and use their military training in a new industry.
“The opportunity to share the Birthplace of American Endurance Racing, a former World War II training installation, with Operation Motorsport veterans is a special privilege for Team Sebring,” said Wayne Estes, president and general manager of Sebring International Raceway. “The experience of working alongside these incredible people who served our country is a blessing to all of us at Sebring International Raceway”
Teamwork and organization are concepts service members know better than most, and while Estes and his staff are providing Crawford and Reid exposure to a new set of responsibilities, they hope to benefit from their military training including logistics and organization.
In addition to their work responsibilities, Reid will serve as the honorary starter for the Alan Jay Automotive Network 120 Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge and Crawford for the 66th Annual Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring presented by Advance Auto Parts.
“We are excited to be able to offer our beneficiaries the opportunity to work alongside a great team of people that represent a true example of teamwork, perseverance and comradery,” said Tiffany Lodder, executive director of Operation Motorsport. “We’ve witnessed first hand the legitimate and positive impact that connecting service members to motorsports has on their recovery and rehabilitation, and we are confident this opportunity for DeWayne (Crawford) and Jonathan (Reid) will prove to be another positive step on their road to recovery within the framework of Motorsport.”
“After being told that I would have to leave the military due to my injuries it was a hard pill to swallow, because this is what I know and I’m good at my job,” said Crawford, who will retire from active duty later this month. “But after linking up with Operation Motorsport that sense of belonging is back. I was able to work in a team with a goal to win. Every soldier understands that no matter how small or big the job, the goal is just to do their part at 100 percent to help their brothers and sisters in arms accomplish the mission. Motorsports is no different.”
About Warrant Officer DeWayne Crawford – Field Artillery Targeting Technician (131A) with 20 years and seven months of service. Three combat tours in Afghanistan and one in Kosovo. He was responsible for providing assistance and advice to the commander and staff on all matters relative to the employment of target acquisition assets and the Army’s targeting methodology. During two of his three Afghanistan deployments he was involved in IED blast that caused a TBI (traumatic brain injury), which caused severe migraines and vertigo. Because of the severity of his TBI the Army determined that he would be medically released.
About Staff Sergeant (Retired) Jonathan Reid – Enlisted into the United States Marine Corps in 2006. Attended boot camp aboard MCRD Parris Island and graduated in December of 2006. Deployed in 2007 to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. His second deployment was to Afghanistan in 2009 in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and again in 2010-2011 to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Reid suffered an ankle injury requiring multiple surgeries to repair damage and was subsequently medically retired on August 30, 2013.